Huh? There are no women in web design? But—scratches head—am not I a woman? Well, that would be a yes, however, if you attend one of the many web conferences or read about the "rock star" web designers—Eric Meyer, Jeffrey Zeldman, Jason Santa Maria, Dan Cederholm—often women aren't mentioned or included. If they are, it is one of the same handful always mentioned—Veerle Pieters, Molly E. Holzschlag (Molly) or Larissa Meek anyone? I don't begrudge Veerle, Molly or Larissa their due but I would love to see a few more names become common-place because there are some wonderful women out there shaping the web. I work with some of them.
I guess I could ask the typical questions of why there seems to be some invisible boundary women can't cross in web design. Is it because women are afraid of the "technical aspects" of it? Is it because women tend to be the caregivers in a family, so they don't have time to speak at conferences? Are we not being asked to speak at conferences? Are we too scared or meek to toot our own horns? Is it because the "man" is trying to keep us down (the was a joke by the way)?
I could pose many more questions and could even speculate about why this seems to be an issue but…I won't. I no more have the answers to these questions than anyone else, I only have opinions and opinions aren't facts—as much as some people would want you to believe they are. What I do know is that every generation—no matter the gender—needs someone of their own gender to look up to. Young women need to see that they too can become successful in their field if they chose web design as that field.
All that said, there is good news, despite the numbers, web conference events are attempting to be more inclusive and we're seeing at least one or two women as guest speakers at a majority of them. So I figured in celebration of Paper Clip Day (I know it was in May but I missed it), I would like to steer you towards some female web designers who are doing good work.
Divas of Web design
Jina Bolton | Sushi & Robots
Meagan Fisher | Owltastic
Jan Cavan | Dawghouse Design Studio
Lorissa Shepstone | lorissashepstone.com
Ali Felski | alifelski.com
Adelle Charles | adellecharles.com
Kimberly Coles | imwithsully.com
Larissa Meek | larissameek.com
Veerle Pieters | Veerle's Blog
Are there some fabulous female web designers out there that I've missed? I'm sure there are but please feel free to do some shout outs in the comments.